“How much an hour?” says the soft, wavering voice on the phone – I try to keep my voice steady.
I explain how much I charge for individual therapy, my waiting list for sliding scale spots, I offer to help find therapists who take her insurance and other lower cost options. I hang up the phone and feel myself sweating through my shirt. I put my cold hands on my face and try to breathe deeply, just like I teach so many times a day, “inhale through your nose the whole way down to your tummy…pause…exhale slowly out your mouth, starting by emptying your lungs, then your torso, again the whole way down to your stomach.”
There has to be a better way. I love being my own boss, I love creating a business and offering a specialized service. I love making my own hours, flexing to offer what I think will be most helpful for any person or family (Bring your dog! or Why don’t I come see the bedtime routine?)
What I don’t love is the cold calculation of affording my daughter’s ballet lessons, of peering at a monthly ledger with a sinking feeling, of hearing my mentor’s voice in my ear “you need to hustle.”
And writing this, I visualize all the future commenters, as harsh as the voices in my head, you could work for a non-profit, you could charge less an hour, you could accept insurance, you could, you could, you could. You are all correct. There are a million things I could do. And I want to give you all the reasons, all the rationalizations for how I got here, why I do what I do. And bottom line, those reasons mean very little. We can create reasons for everything and against everything. So let’s skip all the reasons. And focus on what you and I want to create of our lives.
Here’s what I know.
Finding the right therapist is difficult, therapy is expensive, and growth is hard work.
So I sweat through a lot of shirts…then I decided I wanted to do more, I wanted to create a piece of a solution. So today is the start of Cultivate.Love
Cultivate.Love is a space dedicated to teaching people how to open their hearts, step out of their minds, and engage in compassionate lives. You can find free, flexible tools for helping you increase your mindfulness and compassion with the goal of improving both your own life and the world around you. What if you could improve your life now, for free, with the tools in front of you? Let's get started! Join the conversation now.